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Panasonic Freeview HD Blu-ray recorders announced

Panasonic DMR-BW880EBK and DMR-BW780EBK to launch

Panasonic DMR-BW880EBK

Panasonic DMR-BW880EBK

Panasonic announces the DMR-BW880EBK and DMR-BW780EBK – the first Blu-ray recorders to feature twin Freeview HD or satellite tuners so you can record digital broadcasts in full high definition quality.

Hard disk recorders

The DMR-BW880EBK and DMR-BW780EBK recorders have 500GB and 250GB hard disk drives respectively that should give you around 77 and 37 hours of high definition recording time – or 215 and 105 hours if recording in standard definition.

The twin HD tuners give you the ability to record two digital broadcasts simultaneously or to watch one programme live while recording another. They also allow the standard PVR tricks of pausing and rewinding live TV.

Blu-ray recorders

These new models will also both feature Blu-ray recorders so you can also record onto a dual-layer Blu-ray disc. Each 50GB disc would give you around 7 hours of high-definition recording time. They also come with SD memory card slots for viewing and archiving high-definition images and footage captured with an HD camcorder or camera.

Networking facilities

Both recorders can connect to a DLNA home network too so recorded programmes can be played back in other rooms and, if you hook them up to the internet Panasonic’s VIERA CAST system lets you access YouTube videos, photos on Picasa and other news and business information.

Further model announced

Panasonic has also announced an additional model, the DMR-XW380, which also offers twin Freeview HD terrestrial tuners and the same hard disk recording versatility. However this model only has a conventional DVD recorder (not a Blu-ray) so you’ll only be able to record high-definition content to its 250GB hard drive. 

Like its Blu-ray equipped stablemates the DMR-XW380 is also equipped with an SD memory card slot, DLNA and VIERA CAST functionality. 

Launch dates and pricing

All three products are expected to become available at the end of June. The BW880EBK and the BW780EBK are expected to cost £1,000 and £8,30 respectively, while the XW380 is likely to cost £600. We’re getting a sneak-preview of the DMR-BW880EBK and will have a first look review out next week. Check out our other reviews and Best Buy options for recording from TV.

  • PVR (personal video recorder) reviews
  • Freeview and Freesat set-top box reviews
  • DVD and BD recorder reviews

Freeview HD

Freeview HD brings you high-definition (HD) channels from the BBC, ITV and Channel 4 and later in 2010 Five HD will join too. But you must live in coverage area – find out with the Freeview HD coverage postcode checker . You’ll also need an HD-ready TV set to see the high-definition pictures – see the Which? Best Buy reviews of HD-ready digital TVs . The Which? advice guide Freeview HD explained will also help you explore the options. 

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